Class Notes (810,488)
Canada (494,139)
English (293)
ENGL 3007 (7)

Reading Poetry, January31.doc

2 Pages
Unlock Document

Carleton University
ENGL 3007
Andrew Wallace

Robert Browning - Book 3: Browning is himself a man who spirits away a woman away: Elizabeth Barrett Browning. She is a well-known poet already and her father believes that Browning is a fortune-hunter and untrustworthy. One day when her family is out they escape for a part of the day to get secretly married.After a week they escape off to Italy. Relationship to these poem to epics: drawing formally on other poets. For a Victorian audience, a 12 book poem leaves hanging int he back of their minds the epic tradition. In the background: Dante, Virgil. In Roman Epic, dead and dying women assume a thematic prominence: female corpse is central to military stories and mythology: IE the establishment of the Roman Republic. military stories and mythology: IE the establishment of the Roman Republic. Female death is pervasively sexualized: site where sexuality and violence coincide. Book 2: principally moved not by the nature of the story, but by having come face to face with a cousin of the man who is flirting with his wife: why he is so urgently tied to the text. Book 3: the interest is more self serving and voyeuristic. Viewing Pompilia's death through the lens of saintly life. IE: mock-pilgrimage to Pompilia's death-bed. The speaker imagines his way into the minds and positions of other speakers: he is not just relating facts and rumours, he is actively trying to embody the characters. We are outsiders: greatly removed from the events of the text: we are not the people to whom the speakers in book 2 and 3 are speaking. --> They are speaking to a particular male Roman citizen. Book 4:Aspeaker talking to a crowd. Our meeting with Pompilia is delayed: we hear from Guido and Capponsacchi first. Separates himself from Roman citizens: calls them plebes and a mob. Distinct snobbery. Surrounded by the upper crust of society: speaking to a "Highness". He views himself as being above the general public: several references to the Pope with familiarity l. 53. l34-53: Portraying the lawyers as dogs fighting for a prize. The trial is a spectacle for the fools: a trial as entertainment. Not a means of settling justice: a scandalous and embarrassing performance. The Pope could make a better decision. Suggesting that anyone with any cleverness could do what the dogs and lawyers are doing, but it would take a special kind of mind (as he does) to be able to truly discern things: sense of constant superiority. Good deal of contempt for the kind of aristocracy that Guido represents: that they are now impoverished. Calling the addressee "Your Excellency", the speaker is high in the aristocracy, yet subservient.A notion that it is a speaker who is performing in the eyes of elite Roman society: performing his discretion (making a great show of letting his addres
More Less

Related notes for ENGL 3007

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.